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SPRING 2020 Newsletter

Covid-19 and Artistic Madness

Fun Photos for Sad Times

Original Artwork and Photographs

by Cal Haves

Dear Stained-Glass Aficionados,

Take a deep breath, it’s crazy time. It is being reported that during the coronavirus pandemic occupying one’s self with creative projects while sheltering in place helps to relieve the monotony. For me, in attempting to create this month’s newsletter, my imagination ran a little wacky.

So, with the technical help of my graphic artist, I came up with some fun photo concoctions of my stained-glass lamps and windows with silly captions to match. You may find them cute, funny, or just simply stupid. Anyway, have a look and see what you think. At the very least, I hope they put a smile on your face during these stressful times. 


Lorena & Crew

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Arggh! I hate it when they get away!

Abstract Fish Window

Stained Glass Surrealism

By juxtaposing my stained-glass lamps and windows into these photos,

they transformed from formal compositions to ones of silliness.

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Less is More

Mission Ribbon Lamp -- click to see more

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A beautiful friendship - fairies and dragonflies

Swirl Dragonfly Lamp -- click to see more

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Dreaming of Swimming with the Fishies

Two Koi Window -- click to see more

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What does the kitty say? Aaakkk… Aaakkk….Aaakkk….

Our Winter Friends Window -- click to see more


Romance under a Tiffany Hanging Lotus Lamp -- click to see more

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Grandmother reads by an Orchid Peacock Lampshade -- click to see more

Sharing My Mandatory Staying at Home

As a single, retired person living on a monthly income, I am one of those fortunate few who can quarantine at home without experiencing dire hardships. Since not having my stained-glass retail stores anymore this has been my normal daily lifestyle anyway - staying put and finally getting things done around the house. My, how fast the days fly by! However, the bad news for me is I am also used to running around town and somehow returning home broke. The good news for me is I am now saving money, lots of it. I understand this is true for others too. We cannot buy anything!

Making the Best of the Situation

For the first two weeks of the mandated shelter-at-home I made a nosedive for the living room sofa – yippee!!- and camped out late into the night watching TV; Judge Judy, (“liar, liar, pants on fire!”) old movies, Password reruns, gruesome murder documentaries, etc., with nary a feeling of guilt.

So, Who’s Complaining?

Being “locked up” in my Russian Hill apartment isn’t so bad. It faces west towards Hawaii with panoramic views of the San Francisco Bay, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Palace of Fine Arts, Marin Headlands. It is sunny in daytime and at night I get spectacular sunsets, that is if the fog doesn’t roll in.

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Working off those flappy arms

Eventually I came to appreciate the weeks of mandatory time-out. It inspired me to explore subjects I have been wanting to pursue like, you know, how to really eat healthy (get that blood sugar down), flappy arms, (never had those before), flabby belly, (how did that happen?). etc., etc. You can research all this information from various tutorials on YouTube. I have assembled some good exercise routines and promise to stay on them even after the pandemic is over - I hope.


Spectacular sunsets from my apartment window

Now I have time to play with my three kitties. They are each so jealous for my attention. I have become a cook, concocting soups, freezing dinners. Friends say this is true for them too. Eventually I need to stop procrastinating and sort those piles of papers looking up at me. Long conversations on the phone, checking up on elderly neighbors, reading, coddling myself; give good feelings of accomplishment. Perhaps you have been doing the same.

I take daily walks that I didn’t have time for before. Nearby are neighborhoods famous for their unique San Francisco architecture and spectacular vistas like the Marina, Pacific Heights, Russian Hill and its twin, Telegraph Hill, Chinatown, North Beach. Sometimes I bring a camera and take pictures. The streets are quiet - little traffic these days.


Typical San Francisco architecture,

the Marina neighborhood

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The Lyon Street Steps, Laurel Heights; a popular free outdoor gym with dramatic views of the Marina neighborhood below and Marin County across the Bay


Walking home (slowly) up Russian Hill from Fisherman’s Wharf. Alcatraz, in the distance

But I must admit, I do miss my YMCA classes in woodsy Presidio Park, and flamenco dance classes with my fellow flamencas. It will probably be a long time before those start up again.


Panoramic views framed by Lafayette Park,

Pacific Heights looking south


View from Russian Hill of North Beach

neighborhood with Coit Tower on Telegraph Hill


Walking past apartment building entryways

on Russian Hill


Lombard, Crookedest Street

looking east at Berkeley.

Here’s the Bright Side

Scientists have seen that with so much less human activity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mother Earth has had a chance to clean herself up, to produce clean air again and clear waters - proof that we all share this planet together and must take care of it or else. And in daily news reports, turns out we humans do have an innate compassion for one another. For examples, world-wide, we applaud those first-line health defenders who risk their lives for us, we volunteer to help the needy in our communities, entertain our neighbors live or on video, candidly expose our coping with being shut-in (no makeup, grey roots showing, same sloppy clothes, the kids, the home), we acknowledge we are “all in this together”.

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Other positive pandemic outcomes are: the creation of “Slow Streets”; city streets closed to traffic, turned over to pedestrians, families and kids which may become a permanent feature, reopening of the 1950’s drive in theaters where families can once again share time together, living a simpler lifestyle, reconnect with ourselves and others.

1950s Drive-in Movie Theater

Clearly, the corona pandemic has put the world at a crossroads. Perhaps this is an unexpected blessing for nations to recognize the opportunity to make changes for a stronger, more unified planet.  Hopefully, they don’t pass it up after this pandemic is over.  

I sincerely sympathize with those having it rough due to the pandemic crisis. These are truly worrisome times. I hope this newsletter sends a bit of joy to all my wonderful customers, even for just a few moments.


Take care. Stay well,

Lorena Calcagni, Shades of Tiffany

San Francisco, California

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